By Daniel W. Crofts
"The Diary of a Public Man," released anonymously in different installments within the North American evaluate in 1879, claimed to provide verbatim debts of mystery conversations with Abraham Lincoln, William H. Seward, and Stephen A. Douglas--among others--in the determined weeks earlier than the beginning of the Civil battle. regardless of repeated makes an attempt to decipher the Diary, historians by no means were capable of pinpoint its writer or be certain its authenticity. In A Secession obstacle Enigma, Daniel W. Crofts solves those longstanding mysteries. He identifies the writer, unravels the interesting tale at the back of the Diary, and deftly establishes its contents as principally real. in response to Crofts, the Diary was once now not a diary in any respect yet a memoir, most likely written presently sooner than it seemed in print. The mastermind who created it, long island journalist William Henry Hurlbert (1827-1895), effectively perpetrated some of the most tricky feats of historic license--he pretended to were a diarist who by no means existed. Crofts contends, although, that Hurlbert's paintings used to be faraway from fictional. Time after time, the Diary introduces fabric almost very unlikely to manufacture in addition to formerly hid info that used to be corroborated simply after its book. The Diary bristles with distinctive information concerning the fight to form Lincoln's cupboard and the composition of his inaugural deal with. Crofts's cautious research, followed through the total textual content of the Diary in an appendix, bargains a daring new standpoint at the frantic scramble to opposite southern secession whereas fending off the abyss of conflict. Hurlbert, a long-forgotten eccentric genius, emerges vividly the following. half detective tale, half biography, and half an in depth narrative of occasions in early 1861, A Secession situation Enigma offers a compelling solution to a permanent secret and brings "The Diary of a Public guy" again into the old lexicon.
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Extra resources for A Secession Crisis Enigma: William Henry Hurlbert and
Tucked into the sprawling tale is a subplot involving an American, who is designated as Stangrave. This young New York businessman, “tall, dark, and handsome,” attempts to persuade his friends in England that op6. T. C. Evans, “William H. Hurlbert,” New York Times Saturday Literary Review, June 14, 1902, p. 408; Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Cheerful Yesterdays (Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1898), 107; New York World, Sept. 7, 1895. 7. Hurlbert’s friend T. C. Evans reported a general belief that Kingsley had made Hurlbert “the hero of his American episode in Two Years Ago” (Evans, “William H.
Higginson, Cheerful Yesterdays, 107–11. 44 A Secession Crisis Enigma An Oldport Romance was written and published in 1869 but set a decade earlier in the late 1850s. It cannot be judged a great work of literature. It contains, however, a chief character whom readers of this narrative will recognize immediately. ” Malbone was “a jewel of a listener” whose “sunny temperament” attracted young and old alike. “He liked everybody and everybody liked him,” most especially women and children. Alas, this prince was flawed.
New York Times, Oct. 19, 27, Nov. 2, 3, 4, 5, 14, 17, 21, 23, 25, 26, Dec. 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 1859. 17. , Sept. 10, 11, 15, 23, Oct. 4, 11, 20, 30, 1862. 19 In 1888 Hurlbert published a long account of his travels through Ireland, a key source for chapter 11. 20 One additional tool has been used to assess the Diary and identify the mysterious diarist. David Holmes, a professional statistician, has subjected the Diary to stylometric scrutiny. ”21 18. New York World, Feb. 24, 25, 26, Mar. 2, 1868.